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Radiographic osteoarthritis and pain are independent predictors of knee cartilage loss: a prospective study


Saunders, J and Ding, C and Cicuttini, F and Jones, G, Radiographic osteoarthritis and pain are independent predictors of knee cartilage loss: a prospective study, Internal Medicine Journal, 42, (3) pp. 274-280. ISSN 1444-0903 (2011) [Refereed Article]

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DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1445-5994.2011.02438.x


Background: There is controversy about whether pain and radiographic osteoarthritis predict subsequent cartilage loss. Aims: To describe the relationship between radiographic osteoarthritis of the knee (ROA), knee pain and knee cartilage loss.

Methods: We studied randomly selected subjects at baseline and approximately 2.9 years later (n = 399). The presence of ROA was assessed at baseline with a standing anteroposterior semiflexed radiograph scored using the OARSI atlas for osteophytes (OP) and joint space narrowing (JSN). Pain was assessed by the WOMAC. Subjects' medial and lateral tibial cartilage volumes were determined by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) at both time points.

Results: In cross-sectional analysis, both medial and lateral tibial cartilage volumes were lower in those with ROA. Any medial ROA predicted medial tibial cartilage loss (3.2 (SD 5.6) v 1.9% (SD 5.3) pa) while any lateral ROA predicted both medial (4.0 (SD 6.0) v 2.2% )SD 5.3) pa) and lateral (3.5 (SD 5.8) v 1.6% (SD4.2) pa) tibial cartilage loss (all p < 0.05). In multivariate analysis, JSN and OP at both medial and lateral sites had independent dose response associations with tibial cartilage loss at both sites. Pain was an independent predictor of lateral, but not medial, tibial cartilage loss after taking ROA into account.

Conclusions: Subjects with ROA (either JSN or OP) and, to a lesser extent, pain lose cartilage faster than subjects without ROA and the more severe the ROA the greater the rate of loss. These findings have implications for the design of clinical trials.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:radiographs, MRI, cartilage, trials
Research Division:Biomedical and Clinical Sciences
Research Group:Clinical sciences
Research Field:Rheumatology and arthritis
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Clinical health not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Saunders, J (Miss Jacqueline Saunders)
UTAS Author:Ding, C (Professor Chang-Hai Ding)
UTAS Author:Jones, G (Professor Graeme Jones)
ID Code:76489
Year Published:2011
Web of Science® Times Cited:26
Deposited By:Menzies Institute for Medical Research
Deposited On:2012-03-07
Last Modified:2017-11-02
Downloads:2 View Download Statistics

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